College Chaos!

I have given birth to two wonderful boys! They were the longest labors and deliveries known to mankind…..eighteen years! Both of my sons have graduated from college at this point and have moved forward with their lives.  During their college years they resided in a high-rise “incubator” on a college campus with other “newborns.” The fetal monitoring system (otherwise known as parenting) takes on an entirely new persona. This is the point of labor where our college-aged kids are all freshly born into the most exciting period of their lives…..only if, that is….they and their parents can survive “college move-in day chaos.”

I know that many of you who have been in the throes of birthing your 18 year old babies onto a college campus can identify. Move-in day is in no way the false contractions of Braxton-Hicks. It is real—an intense form of labor in the most physical and emotional sense imaginable.

There are a multitude of emotions swarming around the dorms. There is an eager sense of anticipation as our kids feel their way around their new exciting surroundings. At the other end of the spectrum, there are a multitude of hot, sweaty moms and dads. You can see the physical pains of childbirth, as the parents “labor” over moving load after load to usher their “babes” into a brand new environment.

I remember thinking, as I made my way through the jam packed hallway with very little dilation…. just breathe… breathe….breathe…

There was an hour wait just to get on the elevator. I’ve never seen so many appliance-laden dolleys…push…push….push…hmmmm…..where are those epidurals when you really need them the most?

Meanwhile you could see the dual emotions of anxiety intertwined with the growing excitement from the kids, as they sensed that the “contractions” were mere minutes apart and that freedom would soon be theirs.

This whole experience took me back to the day my parents moved me into my college dorm. My roommate was from out of state and had flown in carrying one large suitcase. We carried load after load of “stuff” seemingly of importance as my roommate watched in fascination. I’ll never forget the look on my roommate’s face when my father stuck his head in the door and said, “I’ll bring ‘the other’ car around.”

I found a letter my father wrote me shortly after that memorable move-in day. He had written, “Do the best you can in your school work, but have a delightful time, too.” And I did. (have a delightful time, that is).

After arriving home following the college chaos moving day for my first son, I promptly collapsed from the painful delivery. However,  panic began to set in when I noticed my son had left his class schedule in his room. I knew that if he were going to “do the best he could in his schoolwork,” it would be imperative that he know when and where his classes were to be. I tried to reach him by the old -fashioned telephone, but his answer machine was already full.?? (I think he was out having a delightful time) Fortunately, I remembered the hi-tech method of locating your “college newborn”…Instant Messaging!

As I logged on, I was thinking, ‘He’ll have so much he wants to tell me.’
The conversation went a little something like this:

HD: Hey, you online?

JD: Hi

HD: How do you like it? How’s your roommate? Do you like your classes? How’s the food?

JD: Good

HD: I found your class schedule. Do you have another copy?

JD: Yes

HD: Do you need anything?

JD: $
(Sensing that I was getting nowhere in this hi-tech one sided conversation, I thought it was time to “bail out” of cyberspace. I just had the most important bottom line question left to ask.)

I held my breath as I typed:

HD: Are you happy?

JD: Yeah!
(I had just heard all a Mom who’s just given birth needs to hear and I knew it was time for me to exit.)

HD: Enjoy yourself. Study hard. Create lots of great memories. Have a delightful time!

JD: Bye, Mama. I love you!

HD: I love you, too.
Ahhhh….The most beautiful words ever that can so easily turn the “labor pains” of a college move in day delivery into a “bundle of joy!”…..AND SO THE CORD WAS CUT….!

Hunter Darden-personalized copies of my books may be ordered by scrolling to the top of the page and clicking on the link or email me at


About Hunter

Hunter has been living her dream of being an author after falling in love with the Nancy Drew Mysteries in the fourth grade. She has incorporated her love for words along with her psychology degree from Meredith College to create books that can be aids in healthy nourishment for the mind. She is the author of five children's books, a photography book and a novel. She has been a human interest columnist for The Charlotte Observer (2001-2005) as well. She was the recipient of the "50 Great Writers You Should Be Reading" by The Author's Show, the Meredith College Career Achievement Alumnae Award and the Excellence in Creative Writing Award by the General Federation of Women’s Clubs. She is a public speaker and teaches a writing camp for kids called Writer's Cramp Camp. (The animated art on this blog is provided by
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2 Responses to College Chaos!

  1. Hello! I realize this is kind of off-topic however I needed to ask. Does operating a well-established website like yours require a massive amount work? I am completely new to blogging but I do write in my diary every day. I’d like to start a blog so I will be able to share my experience and feelings online. Please let me know if you have any kind of suggestions or tips for new aspiring blog owners. Appreciate it!
    My site is about Wedding photography.

    • Hunter says:

      Thanks for writing. I took a look at your site and it looks like you’re off to a beautiful start. My son does the site maintenance for me which is incredibly helpful. Yes, I think it is valuable to express yourself through your blog in hopes of reaching people who can identify. I derive pure pleasure from the writings of my articles. I’m a book author and have worked as a newspaper columnist, so it is my fulltime job. I enjoy the humor aspect of the articles in hopes of touching someone who needs a laugh. The ones rooted in inspiration are written to hopefully touch hearts. In this modern world of laptops and such, it makes it easier to write in a relaxed, “chillin’ out” mode where the words flow more easily. I would encourage you to keep moving forward with your blog.

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